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North Carolina high school sports calendar pushed back to September
State association pauses start due to COVID-19
 
Published Wednesday, July 15, 2020 2:40 pm
by Herbert L. White | The Charlotte Post

PHOTO | PAUL WILLIAMS III
The North Carolina High School Athletic Association announced delay of the athletic calendar to Sept. 1, with a five-day dead period at the start of the academic year to acclimate students to academics.

North Carolina high schools are pushing their sports calendars back to September.

The N.C. High School Athletic Association board of directors approved changes to the fall calendar to Sept. 1, an announcement that comes on the heels of Gov. Roy Cooper’s announcement of the statewide school reopening plan for the 2020-21 academic year. Sports will start Sept. 1 at the earliest and the first five days for students will be designated as a dead period for all athletic programs. Phase One of summer conditioning and workouts can continue until further notice.  

“For now, we believe these steps provide hope for our student athletes, and the possibility for playing fall sports,” NCHSAA Commissioner Que Tucker said in a statement. “We know that many decisions are being made relative to the reopening plan your school(s) will follow. After each [Local Education Agency] has had an opportunity to formalize and finalize those reopening plans, the NCHSAA staff will survey the membership to determine how sports should and/or can fit into the various models that will exist across the state.” 

Tucker said the Sept. 1 start date “is not in cement” and ultimately pushed back “even further if we do not have improved data from [the state Department of Health and Human Services].” 

The association acknowledged that some sports – indoor competitions like volleyball or collision games like football, for instance – present different challenges for schools and their districts, but Tucker said NCHSAA will work with medical experts to determine a course of action.“We acknowledge that playing certain sports are more problematic at any time without a vaccine; however, we remain in consultation with our Sports Medicine Advisory Committee members, and they believe we can and should offer a sports program, with all necessary modifications, delays, etc.,” Tucker said. “In the coming weeks, we will continue working with the SMAC as we plan our next steps for the fall, as well as determining when equipment could be shared—i.e. balls— and/or if we can move into Phase 2 of the summer workouts/conditioning.”

 

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